An Outdoor View: Dream fishing

A couple of weeks ago, I had a dream about fishing. Upon awakening, I was smiling and feeling good, unlike my usual early-morning feeling. I stayed in bed for a while, trying to recall what happened in that dream. I could remember fishing with friends, catching a big fish and having fun, but details were fuzzy.

That dream generated good feelings for several hours that day, and no wonder. After all, I had enjoyed all the feelings of having been on a great fishing trip, with none of the fear, pain, work, anxiety, expense, boredom, bad jokes or fattening snacks of a real fishing trip. I wanted more.

A couple of days ago, I heard on the radio that 23 years of the average man’s lifetime is spent sleeping. That got me to thinking about dreams again.

Dream scientists have found that our most memorable dreams occur during the rapid eye movement (REM) stage of sleep, when brain activity is almost as high as when we’re awake. As I understand it, about 2 hours of a typical 8-hour sleep period is REM-stage sleep, about 6 years of our lives. It seems only fair that we ought to be able to spend at least part of those years dreaming good dreams about fishing.

The trouble with dreams is that they’re so unpredictable. In studies, the average person has 3 to 5 dreams per night, while some have up to 7. Some people dream for only a few seconds at a time, while others dream for 15 or 20 minutes. Some dreams are good, and some are bad. From my experience, the only way I can predict that I’ll dream at all is to eat Mexican food an hour or two before going to bed, and then the dreams are nightmares.

It’s high time that someone came up with something to make dreaming more predictable. The world would be a better place if everyone could have fun every night and wake up happy and refreshed every morning.

Lots of researchers are already well into this field, and cyberspace is fairly awash with Web sites that offer “help” of one kind or another to those with an interest in dreams. If you Google “dreams,” you’ll get more than 500 million results. Trouble is, much of what’s out there is about dream interpretation, just garbage.

One exception that shows promise is “dream diaries.” Studies have found that if you wake up while the dream is happening, and if you record in a diary what you remember at that moment, you can increase your level of recollection of the dream. The very process of writing apparently helps you to recall details that you wouldn’t otherwise remember.

This dream-recording deal gives me hope. I can see it now. In my dream diary, my “big fish” could turn out to be a 98-pound king salmon.

Les Palmer can be reached at les.palmer@rocketmail.com.

More in Life

This image shows the cover of Juneau poet Emily Wall’s new book “Breaking Into Air.” The book details a wide array of different birth stories. (Courtesy Photo)
A book is born: Juneau author releases poetry book portraying the many faces of childbirth

It details “the incredible power of women, and their partners”

Lemongrass chicken skewers are best made on a grill, but can be made in the oven. (Photo by Tressa Dale/Peninsula Clarion
On the strawberry patch: Tangling with waves

Lemon grass chicken skewers top off a day in the surf

This photo of Frenchy with a freshly killed black bear was taken on the Kenai Peninsula in the early 1900s. (Photo courtesy of the Viani Family Collection)
Unraveling the story of Frenchy, Part 1

The stories were full of high adventure — whaling, mining, polar bear hunting, extensive travel, and the accumulation of wealth

File
Seeing God’s hand in this grand and glorious creation

The same God of creation is the God that made me and you with the same thoughtfulness of design, purpose and intention

Chewy and sweet the macaroons are done in 30 minutes flat. (Tressa Dale/Peninsula Clarion)
Sophisticated, simplified

When macarons are too complicated, make these delicious, simple macaroons

Michael S. Lockett / capital city weekly
Gigi Monroe welcomes guests to Glitz at Centennial Hall, a major annual drag event celebrated every Pride Month, on June 18.
Packed houses, back to back: GLITZ a roaring success

Sold-out sets and heavy-hitting headliners

Michael Armstrong / Homer News 
Music lovers dance to Nervis Rex at the KBBI Concert on the Lawn on July 28, 2012, at Karen Hornaday Park in Homer.
Concert on the Lawn returns

COTL line up includes The English Bay Band, a group that played in 1980

Marcia and Mary Alice Grainge pose in 1980 with a pair of caribou antlers they found in 1972. The sisters dug the antlers from deep snow and detached them from a dead caribou. (Photo provided by Marcia Grainge King)
Fortune and misfortune on the Kenai — Part 2

In Kasilof, and on Kachemak Bay, in Seldovia and later in Unga, Petersen worked various jobs before being appointed deputy marshal in 1934

The Western Flyers. (Photo provided)
Seldovia Solstice Fest features 4 days of music, art

The Seldovia Solstice Festival starts at 11 a.m. today, June 16, with a music jam on the Seldovia Bay Ferry

“Glimmer of Hope: How Tragedy Sparked a Movement” was published in 2018 by Razorbill and Dutton, imprints of Penguin Random House LLC. (Image via amazon.com)
Off the Shelf: The power of personal voice

“A Glimmer of Hope: How Tragedy Sparked a Movement” provides first-person accounts of the school shooting in Parkland, Florida